Sitting around here at the SLS Hotel listening to “Ain’t to proud to beg” by TLC, waiting to do press for “Almost Christmas” movie out in theaters November 11th. Entering the room is Mo’Nique shinning like the Queen Of Comedy we call her, she looks absolutely wonderful! Have you ever seen a queen walk? Well I’m sure you have since the royal family stays in the limelight but when I think of a queen walking, I think of a confidence that surpasses her beauty. She knows who she is by blood right and she carries herself accordingly with no reserve. That’s a queen to me; the presence is undeniable.
This is her first major movie role back since “Precious,” she is an award winning actress, talk show host, respected comedian, fashion designer, business owner with years of wisdom and experience in this business as a plus-sized black woman…and I said to myself, “Bitch…if Mo’Nique walks in…sprained knee and all…you better get up and speak!”
“Heyyyyy Mo’Nique, girl you doing it!” Exclaims me…and she was! If you haven’t been following her on social media, she has been dancing her way into health and the results are a hit! She immediately yelled back, “Hey my baby!” And came and gave me a hug. I struggle to get up but didn’t even have to. The hug was genuine and warm; like humbleness if it could be a hug.
And I then I realize I’ve been here before. Monique had a plus size beauty competion show call “Mo’Nique’s Fat Chance” from 2005-2007 and I tried out for it. Of course I didn’t make the cut; she said I wasn’t plus size, LOL, but hey I’m 6′ foot 2″ inches tall; and sometimes tall and big mean the same damn thang. But I remember Mo’Nique then and today I see that same queen I saw so many years ago early in her career.
“I’m Nika Simone from ComedyHype.Com and I’m sorry I’m not scheduled to interview you today but I’d love to set up a future interview with you for the site.”
She looks at her team and says, “I want to give her 5 minutes before we leave for The Real.” She then turns to me, “Let me finish this interview Hun and I’ll come out and give you 5 minutes; let’s do it while you’re here.” I’m thinking, “Hell Yeah!” as she’s walking away but before I could even sit back down, here comes one of her reps saying Mo’Nique wants you to come in the interview room. “You always take leftovers home, baby, even if you’re full! It tastes better the next day when all the seasoning and love sets in!” answers Mo’Nique. I walk in and it’s her AND legendary actor Danny Glover interviewing for another media outlet. Her and Mr. Glover having fun playing a game of “never would I or totally “; holiday get together style.
We haven’t seen Mo’Nique in a while since her Oscar Award Winning performance in “Precious” in 2010. After she publicly spoke out about multiple roles being taken off the table suddenly and being informed she was “blackballed” with a phone call from “Precious” director Lee Daniels; we’ve wondered when will we ever see “Ms. Parker” again.
November 11th is the release of new David E. Talbert holiday film “Almost Christmas”; a heart felt drama/comedy about losing the family glue and trying to maintain the bond while getting everyone together for one last Christmas in the family home.
I think in watching the movie…no one was acting. When you watch this film, you see the matriarch is gone, it’s the first time we all getting back together but you watch the patriarch (Walter played by Danny Glover) keep the glue to his family. And often times we don’t get a chance to experience that (role) with our legends and our icons. And to see Mr. Glover take that role, we became his babies and he wanted to make sure his babies were ok at the end of the day. So that’s what you get from watching the film; he protected his babies.
Mo’Nique tells us.
Danny Glover: “Aww…well…I appreciate Mo’Nique talking about my cousin like that.”
(As the room bursts into laughter)
Mo’Nique: “I’m not fooling with you! I’m not doing this with you today, Walter! Now!”
The on-camera chemistry between the cast was perfection and much like in this interview, you can tell, like Mo’Nique said, they weren’t acting…it was real family. Mo’Nique plays Aunt Mae, delivering a divafied, super star aunt who has lived and continues to live life to the fullest. We all know Aunt Mae and we all vicariously live our own lives through her. Just from her introductory scene playing Aunt Mae in the movie, Mo’Nique is proving to us once again why she is an award-winning actress and that comedy is definitely still her core.
And you know the movie wouldn’t be complete without that famous moniker from Mr. Glover; “I’m too old for this ..!”
“You know? I was walking down the street one time in New York City and bunch of construction workers were working. And I walk past them and I thought they didn’t notice me until they yelled out, “I’m getting too old for this shit!” explains Danny Glover.
We all burst out into more laughs, “It ain’t going no where, baby!” continues Glover.
“I’m sitting right here with “Mista.” I’m sitting right here with “Lethal Weapon.” I’m sitting right here with “Beloved.” And the list goes on and on and on and on but he still has the humility as if he is brand new….seven decades in this business.” Mo’Nique praises about working with Mr. Glover.
Mo’Nique has a new comedy special on AMAZON titled “Something Different” released late September 2016. When she spoke on filming the comedy special last year, she told us in an interview on The Rickey Smiley Show that she took it back to the comedy club.
“I had been listening to Richard Pryor…and for me, Richard Pryor’s best work was in the comedy clubs; when it’s intimate.”
When I asked what will we see “different” about her in this comedy special, Mo’Nique replies; “Life. With each day you grow. With each day you mature…what you’re seeing (in the comedy special) is a sister that’s saying, “I’m enjoying my journey. I’m enjoying every single second of this journey called life; don’t take it too serious, don’t laugh all through it but enjoy it.”
And when asked about if she thinks the next comedy super star will be a female, she says it can be any one.
I think the next comedic super star is anyone brave enough to get up on a stage…that already makes you a super star. To get up in front of strangers and they have no idea who you are and you’ve got to pull them into your space, that already makes you a super star.
She even mentioned “Almost Christmas’s” co-star, internet sensation comedian DC Young Fly, as she continues on the subject;
“For me, I don’t give it a gender…there’s no gender as to who it is. I’ve seen this young fresh comedian named DC Young Fly who’s in this movie and when I tell you that brother is breath-takingly fearless cuz he just says what he wants from his heart, baby! He doesn’t judge it…he doesn’t critic it!”
I wasn’t even scheduled to interview with her and between interviews on her way out to appear on the “The Real,” she gave Comedy Hype 5 minutes of her time and I only used four. Humbled, grateful, and open is what I experienced and enjoying every second of her life; good, bad, and the ugly but still here to walk in the room like the queen she is. Mo’Nique is back with new movie “Almost Christmas” in theaters November 11 and her performance is right on time and she is absorbing the ride.
To be privileged to learn from a legend (Danny Glover); our icon in this business, often times I have to pinch myself and say “for real?” Dreams do really come true.